Bruce excited to be back

Returning Adelaide United FC striker Bruce Djite predicts successful times ahead for the Reds as he prepares to start his second spell in the city of churches.

Returning Adelaide United FC striker Bruce Djite predicts successful times ahead for the Reds as he prepares to start his second spell in the city of churches.

Having signed to a two year deal with the Reds back in March, Djite recently arrived home from a loan spell with Chinese super League club Jiangsu Sainty eager to bring his experience and goal scoring prowess of the past three years to the club.

Djite became somewhat of a cult figure among the Adelaide United faithful and a crowd favourite when he first came to the Reds as a 19 year old. Now five years on following stints at Turkish club Gençlerbirligi, Gold Coast United (in which he finished as the club-s top goal scorer last season), and most recently Jiangsu Sainty, he cannot wait to reunite his love affair with the club and the fans at Hindmarsh Stadium.

“It-s fantastic to be back. There are some new faces around, it-s definitely a new team and one that will definitely challenge for the league this season, and I-m more than excited to be back - a beautiful city, fantastic fans and a fantastic football club,” Djite said.

While the surroundings of training at the club may be familiar enough for the Washington born marksman, the number of familiar faces in the squad is anything but. From Djite-s last game in an Adelaide United strip back in the group stage of the Reds- 2008 AFC Champions League campaign, only Fabian Barbiero, Mark Birighitti, Cassio and Eugene Galekovic are still at the club.

Knowing all too well the constant changes that occur in regards to personnel at football clubs, Djite has a number of reasons that enticed him to come back.

“I think just the fact that I was told by the powers that be that they wanted to have a really strong squad and fight for the championship next year, and the club was relatively close last season,” Djite said of why he chose to return to the Reds.

“Obviously with the fantastic support as well - the fans here are probably the best in the league and for me certainly the best in the league, and the package as a whole and where the club is heading, it will give me all the ingredients I need to better myself as a footballer.”

Djite-s arrival also sees the dawning of what looms as one of the most lethal attacking partnerships in the Hyundai A-League as he teams up with Adelaide United-s reigning Golden Boot winner Sergio van Dijk.

The duo scored a combined total of 27 goals last season and Djite believes having van Dijk alongside him will only benefit both of their output and effectiveness once the season rolls around. Further to the prospect of playing in the same team as van Dijk, a number of the Reds- other new signings also has Djite excited about the future.

“I-m looking forward to playing with Serge. I think even last year at Gold Coast United when Shane Smeltz came back, it really helped me and I think playing with Serge, I think he can really help me as well and I think all in all we can help the team,” Djite said.

“Also, you bring players like Dario Vidosic, (Zenon) Caravella, Spase (Dilevski) back, the signings that have been made, we should there or thereabouts come the business end of the season.”

Djite, who has made nine appearances for the Qantas Socceroos with his most recent cap coming against Slovenia last August, believes he is a vastly improved player from when he first made a name for himself in the Hyundai A-League. Nonetheless, he is quick to point out that the best from Adelaide United-s new number 11 is still yet to come.

“I think my game has definitely improved since I was here last. In Turkey I played in some different positions, I was just over in China and I played a different role again there, so I think I-ve added a few things to my game and I think there-s still a lot of room for improvement,” Djite said.

“I certainly don-t think I-ve fulfilled my potential and think I have still got a lot to give, and that-s why I came to play under Rini. He-s got a fantastic reputation of building up players and making them into the players they end up being.”

“Hopefully with a lot of hard work and the hours I-m willing to put in, hopefully we can get a good result for everyone.”

Bruce Djite DOB 25 March 1987 (Washington DC, USA) Age 24 Position Striker Height 184cm Weight 84kg Number 11

Club History 2010/11 Gold Coast United (Hyundai A-League) 2008/09 Gençlerbirligi (Turkey) 2006-2008 Adelaide United FC (Hyundai A-League) 2006 AIS 2004-2006 Marconi Stallions (NSW)

Adelaide United FC Appearances (Goals) 35 (11)

Representative Honours Qantas Socceroos, Qantas Under 23s, Qantas Young Socceroos

Additional Information

  • Debut Hyundai A-League appearance v New Zealand Knights (W4-2), Hindmarsh Stadium, 22 October 2006
  • Debut Hyundai A-League goal v Queensland Roar (D2-2), Suncorp Stadium, 25 August 2007
  • 2010/11 Gold Coast United Golden Boot (10 goals)
  • 2007/08 Hyundai A-League Rising Star Award
  • 2007/08 Adelaide United FC Rising Star Award
  • 2007/08 Adelaide United FC equal leading goal scorer (6 goals)
  • 2007 Qualified for 2008 Olympics (Qantas Under 23s)
  • 2006, 2007 Pre-Season Cup Champions (Adelaide United FC)
  • 2006 AFC Youth Championships, India (Qantas Young Socceroos)